The Norman Transcript

Sports

July 21, 2008

Missouri's fix

Tigers must win conference to keep moving forward

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — There usually isn’t a certain moment when a football team’s status changes. It might occur after a big win or a big season. But once it happens, the intensity level each Saturday changes.

The crowd noise gets louder at home and away. The spotlight gets brighter. Opponents become more focused. Missouri quarterback Chase Daniel knows what it means for the Tigers.

“We used to be the hunters and now we’re the hunted,” he said Monday afternoon at Big 12 Football Media Days.

It’s a fact of life for the Tigers this season. Everything they do over the remaining months of 2008 will be compared to last season.

The Tigers, who went 12-2 last season, are the overwhelming pick to win the Big 12 North for the second straight year, and a fashionable pick to win the conference and compete for a national championship.

Those expectations aren’t laid upon middle-of-the-pack programs. It’s the leaders who get them.

Missouri made its move in 2007. It went from a team typically on the fringe of the polls that typically receives a middle-tier bowl bid to national championship contention and the Big 12 title game.

“We certainly haven’t arrived,” Missouri coach Gary Pinkel said. “We won the Big 12 North last year, but Missouri still hasn’t won a Big 12 championship yet.”

Most teams in BCS conferences have had that one season when they were among college football’s elite. Doing it on a consistent is a harder feat. Those that can brag about years, decades and generations of sustained success belong to a very exclusive fraternity.

In the Big 12, only Oklahoma, Texas and Nebraska have that kind of tradition.

Everyone is still striving to get there. The Tigers believe they have what it takes to take that next step.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Sports
  • 498415327SB20543_Sky_Shock Paris didn’t give up when instant success eluded her

    TULSA — It looked like it came easily to Courtney Paris. The minute she stepped foot on the campus at the University of Oklahoma in 2005, it seemed she was already an All-American and destroying the competition in the Big 12 and across the ...

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • Sooners will have to do the right thing eventually

    Don’t read anything into the non-suspension suspension Oklahoma leveled at true freshman running back Joe Mixon Wednesday....

    July 31, 2014

  • In this case, Sooner fans can rest easy

    OKLAHOMA CITY — The Sooner Caravan ended its summer run at the Jim Thorpe Museum and Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame Wednesday night. OU coach Bob Stoops did not take questions, but one of the major topics was the $370 million renovation to ...

    July 31, 2014

  • Three Tigers competing for quarterback

    While some teams have had questions surrounding the quarterback position in recent years, Norman High has seen relative stability. Thanks to a three-year run by Zach Long followed up by Jakcob Dean’s ascendance last season, the Tigers ...

    July 31, 2014

  • Indians trade Justin Masterson to Cardinals

    CLEVELAND — The Indians had little choice but to give up Justin Masterson. The trade doesn’t mean they’re going to surrender the season....

    July 31, 2014

  • Cowboys sign tackle Smith to 8-year extension

    OXNARD, Calif. — Tyron Smith has a new contract that will probably make him the most important blocker for the next Dallas quarterback after Tony Romo....

    July 31, 2014

  • Quarterback questions abound with big stars gone from SEC offenses

    MONTGOMERY, Ala. — Quarterback battles and signal-caller questions abound in the Southeastern Conference going into preseason camps around the league. Big names, not so much....

    July 31, 2014

  • Jones says Brent out of rehab, NFL question next

    OXNARD, Calif. — Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones says former defensive tackle Josh Brent is out of rehabilitation and could have his future with the NFL resolved before the team leaves training camp in California in two weeks....

    July 31, 2014

  • Ives to crew chief for Dale Jr. in 2015

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. — There was no shortage of candidates to replace Steve Letarte as Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s crew chief The list of applicants was long, but Hendrick Motorsports has always liked to groom its own talent. So the organization ...

    July 31, 2014

  • Gustafson wants Gordon’s team focused on Chase

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Jeff Gordon viewed his Brickyard 400 win as a turning point for his race team. Confidence had been building with every strong run, but his victory at Indianapolis Motor Speedway pushed his crew to another level. It was ...

    July 31, 2014

Facebook